Inspiring cave rescue cannot obscure society’s darkness

Sandra Bloodworth “We are not sure if this is a miracle, a science, or what”. You will recognise this Facebook post by Thai Navy SEALS. It signalled the completion of a daring operation to rescue the 12 Wild Boar soccer players and their coach from the Tham Luang Nang Non cave system in the Mae Sai district...CONTINUE READING

Trump lies, but his lies are the small ones

Sandra Bloodworth The Oxford Dictionary declared “post-truth” the word of the year in 2016, with the explanation: “it describes not just particular assertions, but a general characteristic of our age”. Donald Trump’s presidential campaign was widely thought to embody this new age. And now, it seems his pres...CONTINUE READING

Pre-colonial society shows humans can live collectively

Sandra Bloodworth “If the test of sophistication were whether or not all were fed regardless of rank or whether all contributed to the spiritual and cultural health of the civilisation, Aboriginal Australia might have a much higher rank than some of the nations considered the hallmark of human evolution.” S...CONTINUE READING

There’s nothing good about Turnbull’s sex ban

Sandra Bloodworth What to do when desperately trying to keep your government from sinking in a mire of salacious scandal brought on by Barnaby Joyce’s sordid and hypocritical personal life? Malcolm Turnbull’s solution is a new “code of conduct” for government ministers, which bans them, married or single, f...CONTINUE READING

Was there a parliamentary alternative in Russia 1917?

Sandra Bloodworth “He who controls the past controls the future.” So says Winston Smith in George Orwell’s Nineteen Eighty-Four. Makes me think of the gaggle of reputable historians who roll out fictional accounts of the Russian Revolution of 1917. Bolshevism? Workers’ power? Don’t even think of it; listen...CONTINUE READING

Russia 1917: when the people rose

Sandra Bloodworth A century ago, Russian workers blazed a new path in human history. Their revolution of 1917 inspired millions around the globe and struck terror into the hearts of the rich.CONTINUE READING

Women, class and the Bolsheviks

Sandra Bloodworth Most accounts of the Russian Revolution of 1917 rightly emphasise the role of women workers in Petrograd on International Women’s Day (IWD), when their strikes sparked the mass movement that overthrew the tsar. But then they disappear regarding the rest of the year – except for the women’s...CONTINUE READING

Russia 1917 A radical workers’ democracy comes to life

Sandra Bloodworth The outbreak of revolution throughout Russia in February 1917 brought millions of people who previously had little say over politics right to the centre of political life. Historian Rex Wade describes how masses of people “burst forth with a dazzling display of self-assertiveness, public m...CONTINUE READING

Henry Lawson and the ‘Australian Legend’

Sandra Bloodworth Romanticisation of the outback and the bush has been an enduring theme in the construction of Australian nationalism. Self-reliance in the face of an inhospitable natural environment allegedly epitomises, or at least captures something central to, “the Aussie spirit”. Think of the endless...CONTINUE READING